“And finally, our prompt for the day comes to us by way of The Line Break’s Tom Holmes. Write a poem inspired by the song that was #1 on the day that you were born. You can find the songs here (Warning: this website only goes back to 1946). Mine is Le Freak’s Chic! Or, if the number one song doesn’t appeal, perhaps try writing a poem based on or incorporating lyrics from the first pop song that you remember. I have fond memories of waltzing along as a wee one, standing on my grandpa’s toes, to Jimmy Buffet’s Nautical Wheelers.”
All I know is that August and Madonna go hand-in-hand. So here’s my 1984-ish reprise of dearest Louise Ciccone and her recent psychedelic-infused (?) diatribe at the Ultra Music Festival.
Molly has returned to justify her love.
She aids my comprehension of metaphors,
I swear I’m like a literary virgin sometimes.
She craves dissonant and kinesthetic instruction,
Believing mind powers function like a prayer.
Borderlines are figments of the geographical imagination,
Confounded by the frailties of material girls and I-Phones.
Molly develops no such love affair with cold steel
Insofar as the erotique chooses to concern itself with more fleshly endeavors.
The entire body of evidence challenges unclear notions,
Such as, “David Carradine, did what, where, with who?
But her enchantment persists, Molly becomes my voice
And I am at liberty to disclose being entirely hung up on you.
The poem’s pretty good. But I’m not real happy about it.
1976, I have been dutiful to you.
Unlike those January babies
Like my good friend Kristian, who
Has loyalties in ’75, percents, and maybes,
Or products of July lovemaking, who’ll
Like Cooks, concede conceived or born outside your borders,
And settle for a seven-seven April Fool;
Who came too soon or out too late;
I practice what I practice with your quarters,
Your drum, and fife, and flag;
I’ve never spent a piece stamped with your date.
Two hundred dollars worth, my lifetime’s haul,
And stood outside in pouring slag
Instead of using you to make a pay phone call.
I have cheered for Philadelphia of all places,
Good faith in your name my solitary basis.
I’ve sought relentless that intangibly
Real pure true American gen
Because you bench-made branded me;
A bicentennial boy I’ve been.
And, 1976, you have let me down.
Sure, you gave us seven-fifty-five
And Viking trips to Mars of some renown,
And, I know, Even Cowgirls Get the Blues,
But I don’t think it’s Sissy babble
To say you talked a lot of jive,
Much more than you would do.
You promised apple pie and gave us Apple.
Your Barbara Jordan keynote
Turned into a Georgian peanut.
But worst of all, the way you hurt me,
Was when I searched the Billboard record.
“What song was number one when you were born?”
You robbed me of the dignity of thirty,
Subjected me to 80’s babies’ scorn.
That was a lunch SO goddam naked
It would offend old William Seward.
“Tonight’s the Night”??!? ROD FUCKING STEWART?